There’s a new Wolverine movie coming out next month. I know nothing about it.
But I noticed that the internet was going crazy this morning, when news broke of a pair of Wolverine-themed hamburgers now available at Red Robin:
I live for silly, fleeting promotions like this! Just imagine the events that led people to decide that hamburgers were the best way to raise awareness about a Wolverine movie. I think about that, and I marvel.
This was not something to be experienced from afar. I needed to be on the front line. I was willing to break a decade-long abstinence from shopping mall restaurant chains to make it happen. I was going to find this beef, eat it, and hopefully live to tell the tale.
Red Robin was almost empty. Thank God. I knew this was going to involve lots of photos, and the last thing I needed were table neighbors who wouldn’t stop staring at the freak who kept taking pictures of his hamburger. Turns out, you don’t need pride to have shame.
Oh good, they had it. THE BERSERKER BURGER. That’s the one I wanted. Red Robin also has a second Wolverine-themed burger, but from what I could tell, it’s topped with eight pounds of weird slaw.
I don’t do slaw. Even Wolverine isn’t enough to get slaw a pass.
I’m not completely sure what the “Berserker” title refers to. I know Wolverine sometimes pulls that “berserker rage” thing in the comics, but for all I know, it could be the name of the new movie’s villain. Or maybe Red Robin wanted to pay tribute to John Nord’s stunning turn as the pro-wrestling Viking who loved to say “huss.”
After a seeming eternity, out it came. The Berserker Burger is served with steak fries, and though I didn’t realize it at the time, fry refills are free. I did read “bottomless fries” on the menu, but the little cup they served them in actually had no bottom. It was like a big Egyptian bracelet masquerading as a fry container. (I found this out the hard way.)
I guess it was stupid to think that Red Robin named their fries after the shitty containers they serve them in. Maybe that 22-ounce Stella was really a 60-ounce.
1. Big oily brioche bun. The kind of bread that sweats just sitting there. Note the Wolverine claw marks!
2. Slab of beef.
3. Thick slice of cheddar. Good color on it, too. Not quite orange, but not quite yellow. It was some miraculous midpoint between the two.
4. “Sriracha onion straws.” God damn, there were a LOT of Sriracha onion straws. This burger had a veritable wig of fried onion. (I didn’t really taste the Sriracha.)
5. Hidden underneath the lettuce and tomato were several slices of spicy pickles.
6. The sauce was “zesty aioli,” which sounded like code for “pink mayonnaise” to me. I got it on the side and was happy to ignore it. I was gonna gain ten pounds from this even without the zesty aioli. I needed to draw a line somewhere.
I admit that my photos make it look like a big glob of garbage, but the presentation really was quite pretty. It looked like a special hamburger.
It was good! Really, truly good! And somehow way lighter than a big ass burger topped with five thousand fried onions sounds like it should be. I’d anticipated this to be one of those burgers that immediately balloonifies all who dare to eat it, but I walked out of Red Robin feeling fine. Nobody had to roll me.
Would I recommend it? Of course! It’s a limited edition Wolverine hamburger! It tastes good, but that’s not relevant. People like us are supposed to eat things like this. Even if it’s just for the conversational fodder.
“Hey friend, I had one of them Wolverine hamburgers yesterday.”
“I HEARD ABOUT THOSE! How was it?”
“The cup of fries had no bottom. I spilled giant steak fries all over the table.”